Editorial: School voters are appreciated

Published 10:16 am Thursday, November 7, 2013

Thanks, voters in the Albert Lea and Alden-Conger school districts. You’ve agreed to support smaller class sizes, better curriculum selections and fiscal responsibility. It’s prudent and wise.

Schools are a major part of a community’s culture and economy health. When the schools thrive, the communities thrive.

Sure, many students leave after graduation to go to college and never return home, but many do stay or return. They work and live in the communities and make it a better place. Moreover, quality schools go a long way toward retaining families. People want to live where the schools are good. And there is no doubt that when employers recruit top talent, they describe the quality of the schools.

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Quality schools are not the only thing that makes a community thrive. It takes quality employers, economic development, transportation system, recreation, medical needs, police and fire, housing, entertainment and even first-impression aesthetics, among others. Being below par in one or more of those areas won’t hurt the vibrancy of a community much, but being lacking in the area of education will without a doubt. It’s the foundation.

There are places in America where people don’t understand this. They want schools to be just fair, rather than good or even great.

But not here in Freeborn County. By favoring our schools, we are saying we welcome outsiders to move here. We want your business. We want your company. We want to be your neighbors.